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Fat Duck’s Heston Blumenthal Wins Chef of Decade Award

Heston Blumenthal stands near the Fat Duck in the village of Bray, west of London. He won Chef of the Decade in the Observer Food Monthly Awards. Photographer: Richard Vines/Bloomberg.
Heston Blumenthal stands near the Fat Duck in the village of Bray, west of London. He won Chef of the Decade in the Observer Food Monthly Awards. Photographer: Richard Vines/Bloomberg.

Oct. 18 (Bloomberg) -- Heston Blumenthal, known for his innovative gastronomy at the Fat Duck, was named U.K. Chef of the Decade in the Observer Food Monthly Awards.

Angela Hartnett created canapes representing the signature dishes of each of the 10 nominees for the accolade, including Blumenthal’s Snail Porridge and Jamie Oliver’s Fish Pie.

“I am extremely proud of my team and the continuous development and energy they bring to our industry,” he said in an e-mailed release. “It’s been quite an incredible decade and I can’t wait for the next 10 years.”

L’Enclume was named best restaurant, and Tonkotsu won for cheap eats in the awards, presented last night at a party at the Freemasons’ Hall. Hawksmoor won for best place to drink; Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi’s “Jerusalem” for best book.

The Fat Duck team created edible trophies layered with dark and white chocolate, filled with a passion-fruit caramel. The event was attended by chefs, restaurateurs and food writers. The Observer Food Monthly Awards were founded in 2003.

The judging panel this year included chefs Sat Bains, Angela Hartnett, Tom Kerridge, Tom Kitchin, Bruno Loubet, Nathan Outlaw, Simon Rogan and Mitch Tonks, as well as food writers such as Nigel Slater and the restaurateur Russell Norman.

The winners:

Best restaurant (over £20 per head): L’Enclume, Cumbria
Best cheap eats (under £15 per head): Tonkotsu, London
Best Sunday lunch: Eagle & Child, Ramsbottom, Lancashire
Best new cookbook, “Jerusalem”
Best ethical restaurant: Poco, Bristol
Best independent retailer: Keelham Farm Shop, Yorkshire
Best place to drink: Hawksmoor, London
Best food blog: The Skint Foodie http://www.theskintfoodie.com/
Chef of the Decade: Heston Blumenthal
Best producer: Burt’s Blue Cheese
Best newcomer in food and drink: Honey & Co
Outstanding contribution: Le Champignon Sauvage
Young Chef of the Year (under 30): Georgina Dent
Best local farmer: Bucksum Salad
Best food photography: Grandma’s Birthday by Colleen Branch

(Richard Vines is the chief food critic for Muse, the arts and leisure section of Bloomberg News. He is U.K. and Ireland chairman of the World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards. Opinions expressed are his own.)

Muse highlights include the New York and London weekend guides, Scott Reyburn on the art market, Lewis Lapham on history, Jeremy Gerard on U.S. theater and Amanda Gordon’s Scene Last Night.

To contact the writer on the story: Richard Vines in London at rvines@bloomberg.net or http://twitter.com/Richardvines.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Manuela Hoelterhoff at mhoelterhoff@bloomberg.net.

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